In 2011, Anthony Barroso shouldered a responsibility most 18-year-olds would find impossible when he assumed custody of his newborn son – now 9 – born a month before Anthony’s high school graduation. “It was a lot of responsibility,” he recalls. “College wasn’t on my mind. I had to concentrate on supporting my son.” To do that, he worked a series of jobs in restaurants and fast-food establishments. Born in Ecuador, Anthony came to the United States as a 7-year-old with his parents, whom he describes as a “working-class family.” While he was attending East Haven High School, his mother became a single parent to him and his younger brother and sister. When he finally entered Gateway in 2015 at age 22, family finances were challenging, since he was ineligible for financial aid. At that point, Anthony felt “behind and unhappy” about where he was. Gateway helped turned Anthony’s life around, however. In 2018, he earned an associate degree in Liberal Arts. He now attends Gateway fulltime and is pursuing a second degree, in Radiation Therapy. The $1,500 NewAlliance Foundation scholarship he received will help him achieve his initial career goal of becoming a radiation therapist. Longterm, he aspires to become a radiation oncologist.
His scholarship definitely will make a difference in his ability to stay in school. “It’s one less thing to worry about,” he explains. “It shows me I’m not alone; it’s not hopeless. Gateway and the help I received from the GCC Foundation gave me a sense of perseverance to get to where I am today.”
“Gateway and the help I received from the GCC Foundation gave me a sense of perseverance to get to where I am today.”Anthony Barroso
As a first-generation college graduate, Anthony wants to inspire young people facing barriers to higher education. He volunteers with Connecticut Students for a Dream, an advocacy group fighting to open doors for undocumented youth and their families. “Making a difference, helping people, being a good example to my son – that’s what’s important to me.”